Juventus and AC Milan look to next season with AS Roma and Fiorentina setting up Women’s Coppa Italia final

AS Roma and Fiorentina will be in the Women's Coppa Italia final, meaning Juventus and AC Milan are already looking ahead to next season after a very disappointing 2023/24.

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The 2023/24 Women’s Coppa Italia final will be contested by AS Roma and Fiorentina, with Juventus‘ season taking another negative turn and AC Milan‘s ending altogether.

With Women’s Serie A taking a break before the second phase of the season gets underway on Saturday, we have had two weekends of Coppa Italia action. Roma have stayed in the hunt for a domestic double by beating AC Milan emphatically over two legs and reaching a fourth Coppa Italia final in a row, whilst Fiorentina continued their promising development by beating the holders Juventus and reaching the final for the first time in five years.

Whilst it promises to be an incredibly intriguing final, the real story is a continuation of this underwhelming season for Juventus which has seen Joe Montemurro lose his job as head coach, the league title seemingly head to Roma for another year, and a failed defence of the Coppa Italia.

Grosso Juventus
Juventus Women’s Julia Grosso on the ball. [@JuventusFCWomen]

Juventus begin focusing on 2024/25

Juventus came into this season in a position which they are not accustomed to. Having lost the Serie A title to Roma the year before, they were the challengers. Underdogs would be too strong a word, but they are used to being hunted rather than doing the hunting.

Injuries have been a genuine issue for Juventus this season with important players like Julia Grosso, Barbara Bonansea and Cristiana Girelli all missing chunks of the season, as well as others. Starting the season by not reaching the UEFA Women’s Champions League group stage was not ideal either.

The above issues and a near-perfect campaign to date from the Giallorosse means that before the Poule Scudetto begins, Juventus are eight points behind Roma with two games between the sides on the way. They have to win all of their eight games and hope Roma lose to another team.

Joe Montemurro‘s departure following the semi-final first leg against Fiorentina, which ended 1-0 to La Viola, suggested that they really did not want to let this tournament go. As it turned out, they would lose the second leg at Biella 3-1, with Madelen Janogy bagging another two goals and Veronica Boquete also scoring. Both sides should have scored more goals, but Fiorentina were the least wasteful.

Juventus won the Supercoppa Italiana so it is not going to be a trophyless season, but they are facing a massive summer. They need to find a new coach, they need to think about which players may soon decline due to age, and they need to hold on to the likes of Grosso and Lineth Beerensteyn who could decide that they are not being given the best crack at reaching the top.

Michela Catena and Alexandra Johannsdottir celebrate a Fiorentina Women’s goal against Juventus. (@ACF_Womens)

AC Milan’s wretched season also ends with Coppa Italia knockout

Perhaps the more extreme version of Juventus‘s situation is that of AC Milan. The Rossonere are now out of the Coppa Italia and with it, the meaningful part of their season is over.

The Rossonere will want to forget this season very quickly but they still need to play eight matches in the Poule Salvezza. They are in no realistic danger of being dragged into a relegation battle, but Como Women and Sampdoria will think they have a serious chance of finishing above Milan.

Where Milan finish does not really matter from this point, the fact that they are in the bottom five is a disgrace. They too may be looking for a new coach in the summer as Maurizio Ganz‘s replacement, Davide Corti, clearly hasn’t had the desired effect and is not the long-term answer.

AS Roma Women celebrate in the rain. [@ASRomaWomen]

The one way to salvage something from the season was to reach the Coppa Italia final, even if they didn’t go on to win it. It is hard to criticise a team too heavily for not beating Roma over two legs, but the 7-2 aggregate scoreline shows it was not even a contest from the moment Roma scored in the first leg. Getting to 83 minutes at 0-0 against Alessandro Spugna‘s side is worthy of praise, but Emilie Haavi and Alayah Pilgrim‘s goals meant Milan had a huge job in Rome.

The task was far beyond them as they were 3-0 down before a late rally where Evelyn Ijeh and Emelyne Laurent scored, but Roma responded with two late goals, making it 5-2 on the day and 7-2 on aggregate.

Whilst the players are not blameless in this terrible season, some of them may think it is time to get out of Milan and the decision-makers have got a lot of work to do if 2024/25 is to be any better.

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